Sunday, February 07, 2010

The Superbowl is over and it was, actually, a pretty good game. Now for the commercials:

My favorites:
Snickers with Betty White was very funny and I loved Abe Vigoda's cameo.
Tim Tebo "Choose Life"....While I don't agree with the message it is well done. I had thought this was going to be a whole series of ads during the game.
Doritos - Keep Your Hands off My Momma and The Casket were the best; the others weren't as funny.
NCIS - Head Slap....I don't watch the show but this was effective and broke out of the normal show promo formula.
Simpsons/Coke - did Fox know about that? - wasn't funny until the hot tub at the end
Budweiser - Bridge Out.....a very good sight gag
Letterman Promo...I give points to Leno for doing this even though we all know Dave will win.
Career Builder - Casual Fridays...I laughed my ass off at this one!
Bud Light - plane crash.....I first thought it was going to be a "Lost" parody; very funny.
Dr Pepper - Kiss....This was a nice expansion on the Gene Simmons commercial. The Mini-Kiss was kewl. WOW
Intel - Intel 15 and the depressed robot was cute
VW - Punch Buggy EXCELLET
Google - relationship by search was very smartly written
Budweiser - kleisdales ALWAYS win
Audi - Green Police Excellent

The ones that sucked:
Dove for Men....did not living up to the hype before hand
Carmax with drama gopher would have been funny 4 years ago
E Trade - I am tired of the talking baby
Census - this ad made no sense at all
Doritos - Dog collar....stupid
Taco Bell - Could do without Barkley rapping
Bridgestone - bachelor, nice punchline of tossing the whale but I could see it coming.
Dockers - no pants...could have been placed at a better time than after a much funnier Career Builder spot

Wednesday, February 03, 2010

Anyone who thinks Rahm Emanuel's comment was "appalling...insensitive" and akin to a racial slur IS a retard.

Before you get voodoo dolls out; let me explain.

First, I was raised in a house where I learned tolerance. There is no one single person on this planet who is one iota better or worse a person that you are regardless of who they are, what they look like, how they live their lives or any mental or physical difference or limitation. One of my best friends has a son with Autism and Spina Bifida. I camped out for the opening of Star Wars Episode I and raised money for Spina Bifida charities. Another good friend is confined to a wheel chair and I think of him as a friend; the chair is a non-factor of our relationship. When I was a teenager my mother and I worked with a group of patients from a state run mental institution; meeting with them weekly in an arts and crafts therapy group.

No one could say I am insensitive to the life of someone who is either one of "God’s children with cognitive and developmental disabilities — and the people who love them".

Here's how I see what is being referred to as "The R Word". Being of the same generation as Mr. Emanuel I can draw on the cultural history to believe this is probably how he views the word as well.

I used the word "retard" when I was a kid. It was a word I used when I had a limited and short focused view of the world. I used words like "pussy" and "faggot" and many others that a pre-adolescent uses to lash out in ignorance at the world around him. To call someone a "retard" would mean that they were the stupidest person alive. By using the word we also attached ourselves with a certain amount of "coolness" because we were using a word we knew wasn't parentally approved; we were saying something "bad".

In those 30 some-odd years since then I have become a more worldly person; respectful of others and empathetic towards those who have had a harder life than mine. When and if I use the word "retard" I am not associating the target of my insult with any actual person or person(s) but that outdated image of a stereotype and the juvenile way I thought of it at that time. If I call you a retard I am not associating you with what I know to be a person who has honest to goodness challenges to their life; to that would be an insult to someone with a disability. If I call you a retard I am saying not only are you stupid but are as stupid, if not more, than that redicilious and outdated caricature from the past.

OK, I may be over-thinking this and I may only be explaining things as I perceive them; it's a lot like trying to explain a joke to someone who doesn't get it. Another thing to remember is that Mr. Emanuel made this comment in private; it's not as if he printed it on White House stationery. Also, the people to which he was referring were "stupid". To think this is a reason for him to be fired from his job fill in the blank.

Saturday, January 02, 2010

I guess one of the reasons I haven't blogged so much in the past few months would have to be Facebook.

I had signed up on it a long time ago but didn't really start using it until this summer. I quickly got in to the habit of those simple, little updates. I could spit out an opinion in 10 seconds and get on with life; so much easier than typing a whole dissertation here.

But then I started missing the depth to which I could write here. Sure, I had fun lighting a liberal fire and pissing off conservatives with one or two words but not everything can be covered in a quick little blurb. So, don't worry...the blog will continue.

I have enjoyed what has to be the best part of Facebook; connecting with old friends. This has been so much easier than it was on MySpace and I haven't figured out why. Maybe its because Facebook is so much more low maintenance than MySpace was. No designing a home page and adding all kinds of crap; everyone's page is the same. Sure, there's the distracting games and quizzes but those are easily ignored.

If you've been reading this for a while, then you know how much a nostalgic person I can be. Facebook feeds that perfectly.I have reconnected with old school friends, neighbors and more. There are some people who know people I know and add me but I haven't got a clue who some of them are but it doesn't seem as annoying as the game of "adding" people as there was on MySpace. I have found my first wife and "almost" third wife. I tried connecting with the first (never heard back from her) and never felt the need to reach out to the other....yet.

OK, so maybe nostalgia can be a little dangerous!

Friday, January 01, 2010

OK, almost three months of no posts is going to be too much to update. My non-posting has been a mixture on little motivation and lots on the plate. But now the holidays are over and I just spent the most amazing 20 minutes with my son.

I missed attending his graduation from Navy Basic Training; which sucked, and then missed plans screwed up not being able to have a weekend with him on his first bit of leave since leaving months ago. So, on his bus ride back to Pensacola he had a short stop just up the road. I grabbed his Christmas gifts and headed off for the bus station. A few minutes late the bus rolled into the parking lot and I stood waiting in the cold for him. What got off the bus was not the same child I saw over the summer.

A tall, well-self-carrying, handsome man in a Navy khaki uniform walked toward me. It was the same feeling I had when I held him in my arms as a newborn and looked into his eyes for the first time. Only this time, I had to look up to make eye contact.

He and I know exactly how to buy for each other; I had gotten him a hardcover Mad Magazine book and flash drive loaded with The Beatles newly mastered catalog for his MP3 player and he got me a beautifully framed graduation photo and Simpson's Bartman collector doll.

Since his time was limited, he had to go inside to get a drink and snack before the bus took off again. I just had to step back and watch him. He moved with a confidence I had never seen in him before. Every move he made was amazing to me. To look at this man and to know he was the same person I used to carry on my shoulders was an indescribable joy.

His girlfriend was traveling with him as far as Orlando, so I got to say final goodbyes to the both of them. He is going to be in Pensacola for another 5 months or so before getting his assignment so there will be opportunities for us to visit together before he goes where ever Uncle Sam sends him and I can hardly wait.

I hugged him goodbye and turned away from the bas back towards my car. I was using the excuse of the cold wind irritating my eyes for the tears that came. Yeah; that was a believable excuse!